ABSTRACT: In recognition of the first annual National Day of Truth and Reconciliation, this presentation addresses the colonial truths that remain embedded in the early childhood service sector as a way to generate pathways toward reconciliation with Indigenous communities in Canada. This presentation is offered through an Indigenous integrative framework to bring a critical analysis of colonialism in early years programs and offer tangible steps toward better relations with Indigenous communities, children, and families through self-reflection and self-location.
SPEAKER BIO: Nicole Ineese-Nash (she/her) is an Assistant Professor cross-appointed to the schools of Early Childhood Studies and Child and Youth Care at X (formerly Ryerson) University, with a background in Early Childhood Studies (MA) and Social Justice Education (PhD). As an Anishinaabe (Oji-Cree) researcher and educator, Nicole's work focuses on Indigenous experiences of social systems, understandings of land knowledge, and community-based research. Through an interdisciplinary Indigenous lens, Nicole's research explores Indigenous youth and child experiences in various educational contexts, including land education programs, disability services, schools, and community settings. Nicole is particularly interested in supporting Indigenous youth to connect with their ancestry, land, and cultures as a way to promote wellness, and has founded Finding Our Power Together, a national non-profit organization, in order to support Indigenous youth in realizing their own goals.